Give it 15 minutes, then decide

This past week I saw three different clients who told me the same thing: “Why did I wait so long to come back to the gym?” A couple of them had been AWOL for months, one, a few weeks.

The interesting thing, to me, was that 15 minutes into their workouts each of them told me this and they added, “I feel so much better now.”

A good rule of thumb to follow is if you think you should work out but you’re really not into it, pick some kind of exercise — the treadmill, a bike, a home workout video, a walk or some weights — and give it a go for 15 minutes. If you want to stop after 15 minutes, then stop. If you want to continue, then continue. The worst thing that will happen is that you will have logged 15 minutes of activity, after which you probably will feel physically better. That’s not so bad.

That’s what I do when I am not sure I want to work out on any given day (it happens even to personal trainers). I tell myself I only have to do 15 minutes, and then I’ll make up my mind about continuing. Sometimes I continue, sometimes I don’t. But I don’t regret spending that 15 minutes working out.

If you wait till you’re pumped to work out, then you might be waiting a long time, right? Or if you think you have to make a big production of it, then it just becomes an ordeal. Don’t do that — just go do 15 minutes.

Wendy Watkins

About Wendy Watkins

Wendy Watkins is a Bangor-based personal trainer, fitness coach, studio owner, and writer/editor. She is the author of The Complete Idiots Guide to Losing 20 Pounds in 2 Months. Visit her website at